Published on September 15th, 2016 | by Justin G.
Gillan: The Album Collection
While best known as the frontman for Deep Purple, Ian Gillan had a successful solo career after leaving that band, first with The Ian Gillan Band and then simply as Gillan. The Gillan studio albums were reissued nearly a decade ago, but were recently packaged together in the appropriately-titled The Album Collection box set. Let’s break it down:
What we get:
Every Gillan studio album – 1978’s Gillan, 1979’s Mr. Universe, 1980’s Glory Road, 1981’s Future Shock and Double Trouble, and 1982’s Magic, plus the “odds and ends” collection For Gillan Fans Only. All of these albums have been remastered, and as far as I can tell it’s the same remastering that was used on the earlier individual reissues.
What we don’t get:
Bonus tracks. This isn’t just a repackaging of the previous discs (like the Saxon and UFO box sets). These are new discs that have just the albums. The For Gillan Fans Only disc has a good amount of interesting bonus material, but not all of what was previously released. If you want all of the available material, this set isn’t going to cut it.
Inside a fairly sturdy (if somewhat plain) outer box, each disc comes in a “mini LP replica sleeve.” In this case, that actually means sleeves that open, unlike the flimsy cardboard sleeves I expected to find. It still means potentially scratching the discs if you take them out a lot, so it might not be a bad idea to rack these in slimline jewel cases. And while we don’t get proper liner notes for each album, The Album Collection does have a single very nice, very thick booklet that covers all of the albums’ vital info. This was another pleasant surprise.
Price: The Album Collection runs about $30, making it a real bargain. That’s a little over $4 per disc. The individual reissues may have more material, but they’ll set you back at least twice the price.
The missing bonus tracks may be a deal-breaker for serious fans and collectors, but casual fans looking to get all of the albums in one nicely put together set for an affordable price ought to absolutely love The Album Collection. Even if you only know Ian Gillan from his days in Deep Purple, the price point here is low enough that you can take a chance on this band without risking too much.
Where to get it: http://amzn.to/2cZ6Q4R
Summary: You get a lot of bang for your buck with this set, but it won't satisfy the completists.